Smarter Balanced & Higher Education
Jacqueline E. King, Ph.D.
Director, Higher Education Collaboration
California Community Colleges
Early Assessment Program Convening
May 7, 2012
Common Core State Standards: An Essential
Component of the College Completion Agenda
Research has
consistently
shown that the
single most
powerful
predictor of
student success
in college is the
rigor of
academic
preparation.
Common Core standards and assessments:
• Anchor K-12 experience in real-world
expectations for success in college and
careers.
• Remove the guesswork for teachers
and schools.
• Allow schools, parents and students to
track progress.
• Identify students who need additional
assistance while still in high school.
• Reduce remediation and increase
college success
Alignment of National and …
“Community colleges will do their part by
agreeing on a common performance level
for “college and career-ready” high school
assessments, working with secondary
school leaders and teachers to align high
school and college curriculum, and
communicating more clearly to students
the consequences in time and money of
not meeting the college-ready standard
on graduation from high school.”
California Community College Goals
“The Task Force recommends that the
community college system closely collaborate
with the SBE and Superintendent of Public
Instruction to define standards for college and
career readiness as California implements the
K-12 Common Core State Standards and
engages with the national Smarter Balanced
Assessment Consortium to determine the
appropriate means for measuring these
standards. Doing so would reduce the number
of students needing remediation, help ensure
that students who graduate from high school
meeting 12th grade standards are ready for
college-level work, and encourage more
students to achieve those standards by clearly
defining college and career expectations.”
A New Vision for Assessing Readiness
Readiness Testing Today
• Each college or system
sets its own standards
and selects its own
measures.
• K-12 has no information
about the standards.
• Students don’t know
about tests and don’t
prepare for them.
• Predictive validity of tests
is unknown.
• Students who “played by
the rules” end up in
remediation.
Smarter Balanced Vision
• Assessments designed
around known, agreedupon standards
(Common Core).
• Readiness standards set
through an open process
with substantial higher
education involvement.
• Everyone (students,
teachers, parents, etc.)
knows the expectations.
• Students address
deficiencies in high
school.
College and Career Readiness:
Really the Same?
College and career-readiness involves more
than math and English. College readiness has
been defined as a complex and multidimensional construct that involves content
knowledge, learning and critical thinking skills,
and practical information (Dr. David Conley).
In English language art and mathematics,
research has consistently shown that skills
needed for success in entry-level courses and
the high-skill workplace are equivalent.
Common Core State Standards make no
distinction between college and careerreadiness in English and math.
Common Core Standards Implementation:
Important Roles for Higher Education
Teacher and School
Leader Preparation
and Professional
Development
Clear Expectations
(Assessments,
Course
Requirements)
High School
Interventions
(bridge courses, dual
enrollment, etc.)
Aligned Curricula
(adult,
developmental, and
general education)
New Curricular
Materials
Smarter Balanced
And Higher Education
A National Consortium of States
•
•
•
27 states
representing
43% of K-12
students
20 governing,
7 advisory
states
Washington
state is fiscal
agent
State-Led Governance
States Join Consortium as
Governing or Advisory State
•
•
•
•
Governors
Education Chiefs
State Legislatures
State Boards of Education
State Representatives Serve on
Executive Committee
• 2 elected co-chairs
• 4 representatives elected by
governing states
• Lead procurement state (WA)
• 2 higher education reps (B. Young)
Smarter Balanced
Staff
WestEd, Project
Management Partner
Advisory
Committees
(Higher Education)
Consortium Work Groups
Work group engagement of 100+
state-level staff:
• Led by co-chairs from governing states
• 6 or more K-12 members from
advisory or governing states
• 2 higher education members
• 1 liaison from Executive Committee
Work group responsibilities:
• Define scope and time line for work in
its area
• Develop a work plan and resource
requirements
• Determine and monitor the allocated
budget
• Oversee Consortium work in its area,
including identification and direction of
vendors
1
Accessibility and Accommodations
2
Formative Assessment Practices and
Professional Learning
3
Item Development
4
Performance Tasks
5
Reporting
6
Technology Approach
7
Test Administration
8
Test Design
9
Transition to Common Core State
Standards
10
Validation and Psychometrics
Higher Education Engagement Structure
Higher
Education
Leads
Regional
Senior
Consultants
• State’s primary
higher
education
representative
• Communication
node for state
• Work with K-12
State Leads,
Common Core
implementation
committees
• One Lead serves
on Executive
Committee
• Advise regional
clusters of
states
• Present on
Smarter
Balanced at key
state meetings
• Listen and
communicate
back issues
• Provide
implementation
advice
Director
• Coordination
and
communication
• Identify
concerns, work
toward
resolution
• Represent
consortium at
national higher
education
gatherings
• Convene leads
by phone and in
person
Advisory
Committee
• Advise director
on issues and
strategy
• Composed of
Executive
Committee
higher
education reps,
regional senior
consultants,
and other
higher
education
leaders
Smarter Balanced Goals for Higher Education
•
•
•
Colleges and universities will recognize the
Smarter Balanced 11th Grade Assessment as a
valid measure of college-readiness as defined by
the Common Core State Standards.
Colleges and universities will agree on a common
performance standard in English Language
Arts/literacy and mathematics for collegereadiness.
Colleges and universities will use the Smarter
Balanced Assessment as evidence that students
are ready for credit-bearing course work and can
be exempted from remediation.
Reaching the Goals:
Expectations of Higher Education
What is Expected
•Participation in assessment
design
•Lead role in standard- setting for
11th grade assessment
•Agreement on performance
standards for placement in most
common entry-level, creditbearing math and English
courses (College Algebra and
Freshman Composition)
What is NOT
Expected
•Use of Smarter Balanced
assessment for admission
•Standardization of admission
criteria or standards
•Standardization of curricula
•Complete reliance on the
Smarter Balanced assessment
for placement decisions (other
data points and assessments
may be used)
Addressing Higher Education Concerns
Comparability
Relevance
Utility
 PARCC and Smarter Balanced working together to ensure that
proficiency standards and data will be comparable and portable.
 Higher education faculty involved in assessment design to ensure that
the assessments are true to Common Core standards and higher
education expectations.
 Data to support tailored instruction for students not on track to
college/career readiness.
Quality
 Computer adaptive technology and performance tasks.
 Common protocols for item development: accessibility,
language/cultural sensitivity, accommodations, etc.
Stability
 Developing business plan for post-2014 and seeking additional
funding for ongoing support
 States actively involved in determining future of Smarter Balanced
Some Possible Options for Integration of
Smarter Balanced Assessment in Placement
Smarter Balanced
College Ready
Provisionally Ready*
12th Grade Courses
Dual Enrollment
Grades /Test Scores
Bridge Courses
Placement Test
Placement or
Diagnostic Test
Not Yet Ready
Placement or Diagnostic Test
*The Consortium has not yet determined whether there will be a
“Provisionally Ready” performance category.
Find Out More
Smarter Balanced
can be found online
at:
SmarterBalanced.org
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